In certain years early and mid-May can remain relatively dry, however by the latter part of the month the wet season is all but guaranteed to be under way across Laos, especially in the northern provinces around Phongsali. Rainfall is typically intense and short lived and quickly replaced by blue skies and sunshine although in the south longer downpours can be expected.
Temperatures remain high, with Luang Prabang and Vientiane experiencing average temperatures of 28°C, whilst further south in Pakse and the 4000 Islands highs of 35°C are the norm. Avoid the short, heavy showers and you will find that May is still a great month to visit Laos as plenty of sunshine is still expected and visitor numbers are lower than previous months.
Slash & Burn
During April and May you may witness the effects of 'slash and burn' farming, unfortunately practiced throughout much of Asia. New ground is cleared in February and, once dry, any wood and bush not required is burnt. Fires are lit across the country and this can create a hazy effect at times, particularly in rural regions.